10-day home quarantine for all UK travellers as India amends guidelines

Topics UK | Travel

The union health ministry has introduced a ten day home quarantine for all arriving UK nationals and asked the states to strictly monitor them in that period.

The revised guidelines which mirror those of the UK government were issued today following its decision to treat fully vaccinated Indians as non vaccinated as a part of its new travel rules. The new guidelines come into effect from October 4. For other travellers arriving from the UK the earlier guidelines issued in February will apply.

As per the earlier health ministry guidelines passengers arriving from the UK have to undergo seven day home quarantine (Delhi and Mumbai require 14 day quarantine as per their airport websites). Passengers are released from the quarantine after testing negative and have to monitor their health for another seven days. 

This has now been replaced with a ten day home quarantine for all UK nationals arriving from UK irrespective of their vaccination status. Also surveillance is being intensified to ensure the implementation of the rules.

 “All such passengers under isolation/quarantine shall be regularly monitored by state/district authorities. The state wise passenger manifest of the flights originating from the United Kingdom shall be conveyed by the Bureau of Immigration to the state government/Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme for such follow-up,” joint secretary (ministry of health and family welfare) Lav Agarwal wrote to the civil aviation secretary Rajiv Bansal today.

Agarwal wrote that the guidelines have been modified considering the trajectory of Covid-19 cases in the UK and presence of all four variants of concern.

Like earlier passengers coming from the UK will have to take a RT-PCR test 72 hours before departure and also take a test after arrival at Indian airport at their own cost.

“The UK is continuing to work on expanding the policy to countries and territories across the globe in a phased approach. We are continuing to engage with the government of India on technical co-operation to expand UK recognition of vaccine certification to people vaccinated by relevant public health body in India,” the British High Commission said in a statement.

Last month the United Kingdom introduced a new system for international travel removing the home isolation requirement for vaccinated individuals from certain countries. The benefit has been extended to an extra seventeen countries including those in Asia and the Caribbean. India however has not been included in the list and passengers from here (even those with two doses of Covishield) would have to self isolate for ten days upon arrival in the UK as per existing norms. This sparked an outcry from politicians and ordinary public and forced the government to raise the issue with the UK government. Following this protest UK government has recognised Covishield vaccine but is yet to accept Indian vaccination certificates.

New guidelines for incoming UK Nationals from October 4 

  • RT-PCR test 72 hours prior to departure
  • RT-PCR test on arrival at an Indian airport
  • RT-PCR test after eight days
  • Mandatory home quarantine for  ten days

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